Music Teacher Wins BBC Music
Day's Unsung Hero Award for 'The Oakley Rangers'
ON his Radio 2 show today, Steve Wright
announced that a writer and music teacher who was born and raised in Liverpool
is to receive a BBC Music Day Unsung Hero Award.
Paul Balmer is one of the five recipients of the BBC Music's inaugural Unsung
Hero Award for work in their community with music. Although he now lives and
runs his youth music group; 'The Oakley Rangers'; in Corby,
Northamptonshire, it was in Liverpool where his passion for music developed.
Paul says:- "As a traveller, I've been on the road for as long as I can
remember, but growing up in Liverpool is where I really learnt to love music. I
had the privilege of meeting lots of inspiring people throughout my childhood
including some fantastic music teachers who took me to music festivals all over
Europe. This unique experience is what shaped who I am today."
Every Saturday, for the past 7 years, Paul Balmer has run a free youth music
group from a local community centre as an approach to channelling young people's
enthusiasm and energy into creative music. The Oakley Rangers receive free 'rock
school' style music lessons in exchange for regular community service. Over
the years Paul has taught over 100 young people with many going on to pursue
careers in the music field.
The Unsung Hero Award was launched as part of this year's
1st ever BBC Music
Day on Friday 5 June, a nationwide celebration of music aiming to bring people
together across communities and generations through their love of music. The day
will be reflected across BBC programmes with numerous events and concerts taking
place in towns and cities in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. BBC
Music Day's Unsung Hero has been a UK-wide search for individuals who have made
or are continuing to make a big contribution to their community through music.
People around the country were asked to nominate someone who has had a
significant impact in their community in this way
Paul said he was thrilled with the achievement:- "I'm delighted to have
won the Unsung Hero Award. Our music group has been going for almost eight years
now and we've had round a hundred talented young people through our doors. It's
fantastic. I launched this music group because of the growing number of
complaints about young people in the area. I saw an opportunity to do something
constructive with them so I took it. It's worked really well. Not only do the
kids get to do something they are passionate about, but they also pay back to
the community by litter picking, planting trees and playing concerts for local
Bob Shennan, Director of BBC Music, said:- "Honouring music's Unsung
Heroes is a core part of what BBC Music Day is about, celebrating people, like
Paul, who make a valuable contribution to their community through music. Paul is
clearly a person who inspires and gives confidence to young people, being the
driving force behind the Oakley Rangers for the past seven years, and I'd like
to congratulate him on his efforts."
From all the nominations, a BBC panel compiled a shortlist from which the five
winners were chosen. They will receive a BBC Music VIP Pass, giving them and
their friends tickets to a BBC Music event from a selection which includes the
BBC Proms In The Park, Radio 2 Live In Hyde Park and BBC Music Awards.
BBC Music Day is presented by BBC Music, the corporation's strongest commitment
to music in 30 years; comprising an ambitious wave of new programmes,
innovative partnerships and ground breaking music initiatives.
Paul is the fourth BBC Unsung Heroes Award winner to be announced. In his shows
earlier this week, Steve revealed Denise White (Northern Ireland), Hannah Brine
(London) and Mary Bell (Scotland) received the Unsung Hero Award. The final
recipient will be announced by Steve Wright on his show tomorrow.
All of the recipients are invited to Glasgow on Friday, 5 June 2015, to be in the
audience of 'The One Show' which is coming live from the BBC Music Day
celebrations at Pacific Quay. And later that evening at Glasgow City Halls they
will be guests of honour in the audience for Radio 2's 'Friday Night is BBC
Music Night', a special gala concert hosted by Ken Bruce and Katie Derham,
featuring the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra with an incredible line up of
artists - pop legends Lulu and Deacon Blue, Radio 2 presenter and jazz pianist
Jamie Cullum tenor Noah Stewart, violinist Jack Liebeck, Bhangra artist Jaz
Dhami, Scottish folk star Claire Hastings, and harpist Catrin Finch. This show
will also be simulcast live on Radio 3, Radio Scotland and the Asian Network.
City looking ship shape for
another maritime spectacular
LIVERPOOL is gearing up for another
weekend of maritime spectacles as one of the City's most popular annual events
returns. The FREE Liverpool International Mersey River Festival in partnership
with Wild Thang branded clothing and merchandise experts starts on Friday, 5 June
2015 and runs until Sunday, 7 June 2015.
Liverpool's waterfront will be awash with ships, stages and activities to suit
all ages. Just some of the weekend highlights include:-
Tall Ships, yachts and canal boats; many of which will be open to the public to
The return of the Royal Navy and Royal Marines
Village to Graving Docks which includes helicopters, recruitment vehicles and
diving tanks and unarmed combat and weapons displays. As part of this the Sea
Cadets will be performing their field gun window ladder semaphore and club
swinging displays. Also the following will be taking place:-
► International Canoe Polo Tournament.
► Brouhaha Homecoming Parade at 11am on Sunday.
► A model boat display and art exhibition in the
► 2 air displays per day from the Yakovlevs.
► Flyboarding and wakeboarding demonstrations
along with have-a-go water sport sessions.
► The popular Raft Race on Sunday where some
participants will end up high and not so dry.
► Maritime themed street theatre and get
involved workshop sessions.
On top of the usual activities, Liverpool will also play host to the first ever
Northern Boat Show with a stunning line-up of power boats, cruisers, narrow
boats and sail boats exhibited featuring some of the biggest and most popular
brands in the marine world. The land-based part of the exhibition is free to all
visitors, but there will be a £5 entrance fee for the pontoon access. Tickets are
NorthernBoatshow.Co.UK or from the
Tourist Information Centre located at the Albert Dock. And of course Music on
the Waterfront which this year is working in partnership with Albert Dock
Liverpool, is back and bigger than ever with three stages; the main stage at
the Pier Head, the Making Waves stage at the Mann Island Basin and the Hartley
Quay Stage, on board Tall Ship Morgenster.
The weekend of music kicks off on Friday as the city plays host to the first BBC
Music Day. The Main Stage will see BBC Radio 6Music DJ Craig Charles bring his
trunk of funk back to the waterfront with live music starting from 4pm and
running until 11pm. Craig will be joined by special guests throughout the set.
Saturday's Main Stage, from 1pm to 8pm, is hosted by Smooth Radio and includes acts
such as Collabro, Sam Bailey and a special appearance by David Gest and Kym
Marsh. Ian Prowse will take to the Tall Ship stage and popular Liverpool Signing
Choir will perform at Mann Island Basin.
Bay TV's Jay Hynd and Ellie Phillips will host Sunday's Main Stage from midday
to 7pm, and will provide the perfect lazy Sunday afternoon sound track. With
'Home Grown' as the theme Rebecca Ferguson, The Hummingbirds and KOF are just
some of the acts set to wow the crowd. Mezzo-soprano Danielle Thomas and the
Royal Marine Band of Scotland will perform on the other stages which will see
acts on there from midday to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday.
For full details of the programme, visit:-
Assistant Mayor and Cabinet Member for Culture, Tourism and Events said:-
"It's been a busy couple of weeks for our World Heritage Waterfront and we're
still riding high on the massive success of the Three Cunard Queens weekend, so
it feels like great timing for yet another maritime celebration!
We know there is a real appetite for events which have a focus on the River, and
once again we expect tens of thousands of visitors to spend time at the Pier
Head and the Albert Dock making the most of the free activities on offer.
This year's event is going to be kicked off in fantastic style as Liverpool is
the host City for the 1st BBC Music Day and there's a real buzz around seeing
Craig Charles perform once again in front of a home crowd.
It's clichéd, but there really is something for everyone across the 3 days
and I encourage as many people as possible to come along and experience this
fantastic event for themselves."
Peter Cronin, Director of Development and Marketing, Albert Dock Liverpool,
said:- "Albert Dock Liverpool is proud to support Culture Liverpool in
delivering a fabulous itinerary of waterfront activity by sponsoring Music on
the Waterfront; part of the International Mersey River Festival taking place in
June this year. This year's action-packed festival will continue to foster links
between Culture Liverpool and Albert Dock through this internationally acclaimed
This year's International Mersey River Festival forms part of One Magnificent
City, a 7 week programme of activities celebrating Liverpool's internationally
renowned maritime history and transatlantic links. It began on Friday 15 May
with the cultural celebration that is LightNight and will run until the weekend
of the 4 July when Liverpool will host the UK's biggest Independence Day
celebrations under the banner Transatlantic 175. Throughout the seven weeks
various activities will be held which mark the 175th anniversary of Cunard.
For more information visit:-
OneMagnificentCity.Co.UK or follow @OMCLpool
on Twitter and One Magnificent City Liverpool on Facebook. Up-to-date details
can also be found at:-
or Liverpool Cruise Terminal on Facebook.
Witness Appeal following shooting in
Stockbridge Village, Merseyside
Police are appealing for witnesses following an injury shooting in Stockbridge
Village on Monday, 1 June 2015. Shortly before 1.30am Officers were called to
Boydell Close following reports that a 31 year old man had been shot in the leg.
Merseyside Police said that:- "It is believed that the victim had been
arguing with 2 men on his doorstep and during the argument was shot by 1 of the
men, who then ran off. The victim sustained serious wounds to his leg, which are
consistent with being shot with a shotgun, and he was taken to hospital where
his condition is described as serious. His injuries are not believed to be life
threatening. The scene has been cordoned off for forensic examination and house
to house inquiries will be carried out. High visibility patrols have been
stepped up in the area to reassure the local community. The investigation is in
its early stages and at this stage the motive for the shooting is unknown,
although it is believed that this is a targeted attack. Detectives are appealing
to anyone who may have information about the shooting to contact them."
Anyone who can help the Police with their investigation in to the shooting can
contact the specialist Matrix team on:- 0800 230 0600, or Crimestoppers
anonymously on:- 0800 555 111.